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5 Players Who Will Be Toughest for the Cubs to Cut or Demote

Jason S. PariniCorrespondent IIMarch 20, 2013

5 Players Who Will Be Toughest for the Cubs to Cut or Demote

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    Only 11 games remain in the Cubs' 2013 spring training season, including a split-squad meeting versus the Mariners on Thursday. 

    Some have impressed, some have disappointed and some have done nothing at all.

    With the regular season almost upon us, we look at which players will be the hardest for the Cubs to cut or demote.

5. Brad Nelson

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    Despite the fact that Nelson hasn't exactly tore up spring training, he would still be a sufficient backup to Rizzo at first base (his natural position).  He also has some power, already cranking two home runs this spring, but Nelson probably won't see the majors in April. 

    Expect Brent Lillibridge to be used as Rizzo's backup. 

4. Johermyn Chavez

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    Johermyn Chavez, as I mentioned in a previous article, has never progressed past Double-A ball.  However, he has played impressively this spring, knocking out a home run and hitting for a .333 average.  He has also shown good range and an impressive arm in the outfield. 

    I expect to see Chavez in the majors by the end of next season if he keeps playing well. 

3. Chris Rusin

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    Rusin has played very well this season and is a legitimate candidate for a bullpen roster spot.  He has a 2.50 ERA and an opponent batting average of .242. 

    Unfortunately, I think that the Cubs will start him in Triple-A Iowa.  As much as the Cubs need a left-hander in the bullpen, Rusin still needs to be developed a bit more before he becomes a full-time big leaguer.

2. Javier Baez

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    I put Javier Baez at No. 2 because... well, he was already optioned to minor league camp.  However, Cubs fans are still abuzz with the talk of what Baez could be.  The toughest part about sending Baez to minor league camp is knowing that he has the potential to bring a lot to the Cubs already, but now just isn't his time. 

    Baez hit .302 with four home runs and 10 RBI this spring.  He will likely be headed to the Daytona Cubs, a Class-A Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. 

1. Brian Bogusevic

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    By a show of hands, who ever dreamed that the Cubs would be contemplating on putting a 2012 Houston Astro on their roster?  Go ahead, I'll wait.

    Bogusevic hit a measly .203 last season with the Astros, but has made a strong statement this spring.  He's hit .400 with a home run, triple and only five strikeouts.  However, the Cubs already have two left-handed outfielders in Nate Schierholtz and David DeJesus.  I don't expect Bogusevic to make the roster, despite his very impressive spring. 

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